Realize What You Are

             When a bucket has even a single hole in it, no matter how many times you lower it into the well, the water will run out.  What about the mind?  Nature is there continually offering all its innumerable gifts.  But if the mind has holes in it, how can it retain what it receives?  No matter how many times I is filled with the b country of the universe, it still feel lack and emptiness. 

            What makes these holes in our thinking?  It is our marry barriers, boundaries, likes, dislikes, resentments, judgments, expectations, projections in one word, our karma’s.  Nature has no discrimination.  The sun, the rains are for all.  The air we breathe is universal; all are breathing universal breath.  In our hurry to give labels and categories to the world, we do not see its beauty.  We do not feel our feeling.  We pass by nature’s bountifully offerings. 

            How to fill up the holes of the mind?  Paushadha—take time to retreat from the many activities which have created wounds in you psyche and mind and heal yourself. Take a few hours, a few days, a few weeks to heal yourself with the deep all-pervading peace of meditation. 

            Many of us do not know that we are bleeding inside.  We have put bandages on top of our wounds to absorb the bleeding or we have taken outside medicines to dull the pain and numb the limbs.  What kind of bandages do we use? Small entertainment’s, a myriad of activities to keep us busy.  As long as we are young and healthy, we don’t notice the way we have been using these “painkillers” as a crutch.  

            The time comes when the downgrade spiral begins.  The symptoms start to show.  Inside there is hollowness, brooding, weakness, and fatigue.  The time comes when we have to confront ourselves.  The time comes when we have to see our pain and call a halt to running away from it.  Praktikramana—Step backs and sees what you are.  

            The real enlightened souls, from past and present, from all different geographical locations used their days and nights for introspection, understanding and meditation.  Their inner voices took the form of words, and from these utterances of pure ecstasy and insight we glean wisdom.  Out of their deep compassion for mankind they shared their teaching with us to inspire and uplift our lives. 

            What did they see?  The indiscriminate sentient Energy which is blissful, beautiful and immortal, hidden in all living forms, What did they understand?  That the universe works like a calculator, totaling al of our vibrations.  Each thought we have has its own vibration.  According to the way it vibrates in th e universe, it attracts subtle atoms, These atoms are what build our thinking, speaking, longing, Thus the ancient wise people were able to diagnose man’s disease.  They found that pain does not come from without, but comes as a result of something within our own negative vibrations. 

            There are three steps we can take in order to fill in the gaps of mind and make ourselves whole:  (1) realize, (2) recover, and (3) retain. 

            First, realize what you are—the microcosm of the macrocosm.  Before you can see the invisible, start with the visible; before you experience the formless, investigate the forms.  See that in form youo are composed of the same elements as the universe.  The solid parts of your body—hair, teeth, skin, nails and bones—are the earth elements.  They are the  “dust.”  All the fluids—blood, sweat, saliva, and tears—are the watery elements in us.  That which causes chemical reactions, including the digestion of food and body heat, is the fire element.  The breath which is constantly coming and going is the air element. 

            So what is without is within.  There is no running away from the world.  The form you see in you is the form of the cosmos.  In ancient Jain palm leaf manuscripts, artists even depicted the form of the cosmos in the form of man.           

            Because of this deep relation between microcosm and macrocosm, we are affected by seasonal changes.  If it is cold outside, our body feels cold.  Just as nature’s forms are in a constant state of flux and change, so our form is undergoing continuous change. 

            What is the hidden reason for change?  What is the law behind the cycle of the seasons?  To renew and refresh.  In order to remain continually fresh, water is ever moving, ever renewed by the ebb and flow of the tides.  Like water, if life does not flown, it becomes stagnant.

            In order to adjust to the laws of nature, all forms accept change.  We can learn even form the trees.  In the fall, they give up their leaves.  They do not resist.  It is a process, a catharsis, a fasting, a cleansing, a shedding.  It is throwing away the old in order to make room for the new.  There is no sorrow or pain.  There is deep patience.  There is deep wisdom.  They know that the life force is retained.  Heat remains in their roots.

            The trees know  “If I want new leaves, I have to give up old ones.”  Similarly, if you want to feel fresh and make room for the new, let there be a fall in every season of youlife.  Drop away old thoughts like dry leaves and open yourself to new ways of thinking and living If you want to expand and grow, keep your relationship with the universe continually positive, receptive, expectant.

            At the heart of Eastern philosophy is the teaching of detachment.  What is this philosophy?  It is merely a philosophy of the seasons.  It is learning to live in harmony with the seasons.  It means this: the things, which are relevant to this moment in time, are relevant, and the things, which are not relevant to this moment, are not relevant.  Holding on when it is not relevant to held on—that is called attachment.

            When you are clinging, you don’t know whether things are relevant or not.  Clinging makes you do one of two things, either feel remorse when the attachment goes or drain yourself trying to hold what cannot be held.  When someone or something goes, allow the passage.  Flow with the seasons.

            One who is detached gives up with reverence.  Like the leaves, which dance as they give themselves up, you give up with joy.  To receive is joy.  Everyone likes to receive something new.  To give up with the same joy is very difficult.

            And yet if you don’t give u, you don’t receive.  Continuously there is giving and receiving.  When you give up with balance, tears don’t cloud your vision.  When you give up with poise, you don’t feel inside pain and regret, when a person leaves you, say “I wish you well.”  Holding on or regretting you are losing both the person and your peace.  In return you are getting nothing but the results of your negative vibrations.

           To realize what you are, meditate on the philosophy of life which can help you change your old habits of mind, Say to yourself,  “all right, the trees give up.  Why do I  not?”  Watch each thought.  Ask yourself,  “Is this thought living the past?”  If some, then you know that you are not living in harmony with the season.  If you notice that your mind likes to escape into the barn of old memories, say to yourself,  “I am going out of the cycle of life because I am living in the past.  The past has already given me the result I wanted and still I am clinging to it.”

            By watching you are able to untie yourself.  You resolve,  “I want to go further.”  Many good things are waiting for you tomorrow if you unite yourself from the past.  All the springs come from winter.  What you call barrenness is to the trees nothing but a period in which they have to wait in expectation.  This period is given to you for your understanding.

            It is a Period of transition, before the coming of spring, before the rebirth of new life.  In reality there is no death.  We are like the baby nursing at the breast.  When the mother notice that milk has dried up on one side, she moves the baby to the other side.  In between, the baby cries.  He does not see that in between in the moment of awaiting the new fresh milk.  He does not see that there is normal loss.

 Next

What is Meditation? |Beinning Practice | Beginning Meditation: calming Down and Observing Yourself and Your Breathing| Developing One-Pointedness |Deeping Meditation: Emtrying and Focusing | Impediments to Growth: The Ego |Continuing Practice: Meditation on Hrim and Breathing |How Shall we Approach Life Through Meditation? | The Use of Mantras: Veerum and Sohum |Seeking Our True Nature |Deepening Meditation: who Am I? |Deepening  Meditation: Eliminating  Negative Traits |Meditation: The Art of Life and Experience of Light | Review |Meditation and the Art of Communication |Guided Meditation: Experiencing Light and Life| Meditation in Jain Philosophy|Sense Beyond the Senses| Perfection Is in Us|Realize What You Are